“14 days to die” by A.B. Whelan – Book Review

This title has been lingering on my TBR for quite some time so I decided that it was high time I read it. The first line captivated me, and I was more or less riveted to the novel for its duration.

“It was a fine winter day that eighth of February
when I decided to kill my husband.”

Sounds cold. Calculating. Yet… the reader comes to realize that the reason she wants to kill her husband is that he has put a ‘hit’ out on her! A man with a foreign accent calls her on the phone telling her so – and that she has 14 days to die.

Sarah Johnson is the mother of two young children, a devoted mother and housewife. Her husband Mike, an Air Force firefighter, is having an affair.  This is the reward she gets for following him around the world for his career, neglecting her career that she coveted.

The setting is Temecula, Southern California. A suburban community where things look fine to the unwary observer.

“If my husband thinks badly enough of me to hire someone to kill me,
maybe I am bad. I can be bad – that I know. I will show him just how bad.”

The book is told in countdown fashion. 14 days to die, 13 days to die, etc.  This is interspersed with police interviews ‘after an event’.  This event is not apparent to the reader until later on in the book.

Also, the reader is given hints as to something in Sarah’s past that would make her a less than reliable narrator.

“I need my old friend madness, if I want to execute such an unforgivable sin, or I will fail.”

You know how, when you are REALLY angry, you are filled with adrenaline?  I felt that way while reading this novel.  Frenzied almost. And I never really knew who Sarah was.  Was she mentally unstable? a victim to be pitied? a scheming manipulator? or… a sociopath? Other aspects of her personality were unlikable, her husband Mike was unlikable, yet… I kept rapidly turning pages.  I akin it to the fascination one feels when glued to the television after a disaster has taken place.  You can’t watch it, yet you can’t NOT watch it.

“The past always catches up with us.
There are no unsettled scores or unpaid bills in life.”

Meanwhile, Sarah is losing weight. Her throat is bothering her a lot and her voice is getting hoarse. No wonder, all the stress she has been under lately…

Mike has pretty much always been emotionally abusive.

“Maybe subconsciously I married him because he offered me the punishment I believed I deserved…”

It is no surprise then, that Sarah, severely stressed and with little to no support system, turns to a handsome neighbor.  Bruce is a wealthy, unmarried, casino manager. They share an unquenchable lust.

Oh, and did I mention that Sarah is a book blogger?  Funny, I think she is the first book blogging protagonist that I’ve ever read.

The ending of the novel felt rushed, yet it did contain some jaw-dropping twists. The hitman’s character seemed more than a tad unbelievable, yet still I read on.  Although I could spot several weak points in the plot, they didn’t stop me from reading this compelling work of suspense fiction. It is for that reason that I give this book 4 stars.

“I received a digital copy of this novel for free from InMotion Capitol via NetGalley – at my request – and I provided this review voluntarily.”

A. B. WHELAN writes young-adult fiction and fantasy novels. She is the author of the Fields of Elysium series. She lives in sunny California.

14 Days to Die is her first adult thriller.

Her second thriller, “As sick as our secrets” is due to be published February 14, 2018.

About Fictionophile

Fiction reviewer ; Goodreads librarian. Retired library cataloger - more time to read! Loves books, gardening, and red wine. I have been a reviewer member of NetGalley since October 2013. I review titles offered by Edelweiss, and participate in blog tours with TLC Book Tours.
This entry was posted in Book Reviews, NetGalley, Page turners, Psychological thrillers, Suspense and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to “14 days to die” by A.B. Whelan – Book Review

  1. Holly B / Dressedtoread says:

    This sounds like a page turner! Going to add!


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  4. skyecaitlin says:

    It sounds great!


  5. Fantastic review! I’ll be adding this to Goodreads. 😊


  6. Great review! This sounds really intriguing!

    Liked by 1 person

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